End of Year Collaborative Reflections

August amnesia is soon coming to a campus near you. It's the "what did we say we were going to do" syndrome. My gut says everyone in school leadership has experienced this, maybe even you. I know I have as a teacher and an administrator. Here's a simple solution to remedy the amnesia. These strategies will … Continue reading End of Year Collaborative Reflections

Daily Essentials for Principals

The 10 Tips shared in this post will energize any campus! My favorite is the sacredness of time allotted for instructional leadership.

Set the time aside each week. Turn off radios. No interruptions. This time is as important as meeting with the superintendent. It’s sacred.

And during this time, engage. Work with students. Work with teachers. This is collaboration (co-laboring), and it works like therapy to keep your focus on what matters to the school.

It’s the sacred time that’s essential to remain focused on why we’re here. Engaging in the instructional process will energize and help you regain perspective. Here are some essential ideas to do in the classroom:

  1. Teach a small group.
  2. Co-teach with the teacher.
  3. Work with students one-on-one.
  4. Leave the observation checklist in the office.
  5. Leave a sticky note to affirm your teachers.
  6. Write an email thanking them for the time and show appreciation.
  7. Smile.
  8. Lead by example.
  9. Learn.
  10. Smile more.

Time in the classroom is not optional. It is the essence of what we do. Make it a must in your daily routine and watch the school climate shift!

Lead...Learn...Lift

Being a principal is a very demanding job. Every principal will face frustrating moments, seemingly impossible deadlines, and will be expected to overcome enormous obstacles. However, in my experience as a principal at all levels, there are “10 Daily Essentials I Engaged in Daily.”

Wake Up Excited About the Day

Every morning when I awake, I’m not only filled with energy, excitement, and enthusiasm about being blessed to see another day, but elated that I’m in a leadership position to touch and change a child’s life and inspire teachers through their experience at school.

Establish an Inspirational Routine for the Morning Commute

Although I’m usually the second person to school (custodian is usually there first), I ALWAYS expect to be met with a possible issue from the custodian or a concern from a teacher, staff member, student, or parent. Therefore, I must have an overflow of positive energy. It’s imperative…

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Burned Out, Beaten Up, and Fighting Back (Book Review)

Burnout is not what you think is it. It is real, and it is not shameful to confess it. You are no less of an educator because of it...in fact, you might just be too much of an educator! In her new book, Dr. Latoya Dixon tackles the issue of burnout and confronts the narratives and … Continue reading Burned Out, Beaten Up, and Fighting Back (Book Review)

Educational Practices for the Past, the Future, and Humans (2018)

  Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana. We’re already wrapping up the first month of 2018, and I’m reflecting on where 1/12th of the year has gone. Time marches quickly, which gives me reason to think about shaking things up. What will you decide to do with your 2018, so that … Continue reading Educational Practices for the Past, the Future, and Humans (2018)

Be Our Guest

Sarcasm, shame, unforgiveness…all stem from unrelatable dispositions for educators. Maybe they work in other aspects of life, but not in classrooms. Not in schools.

There are too many variables, too many factors that can make or break a young student who is forging more than academic learning. Our students are forging their identities, their self. They are laying the foundation of their futures, they do not need mud thrown into the mix of their concrete.

Our students are forging more than academic learning – they are forging their identities, their futures.

Uncertainty, openness, and curiosity don’t plague the minds of our students – they bless them with childlike wonder. They are both spark the ignition for learning and pose a need for protection and kindness from educators. They are the reasons students should always, regardless of their choices, be our guests.

What is your focus as educational leader on your campus?

Leading and Learning

I read the following quote from Between Parent and Childby Haim G. Ginott this week and it really hit home, literally.

“What do we say to a guest who forgets her umbrella? Do we run after her and say “What is the matter with you? Every time you come to visit you forget something. If it’s not one thing it’s another. Why can’t you be like your sister? When she comes to visit, she knows how to behave. You’re forty-four years old! Will you never learn? I’m not a slave to pick up after you! I bet you’d forget your head if it weren’t attached to your shoulders.” That’s not what we say to a guest. We say “Here’s your umbrella, Alice,” without adding “scatterbrain.” Parents need to learn to respond to their children as they do to guests.”

How many time have I spoken to my own children…

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